Paul Goldschmidt powers Diamondbacks past Dodgers
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Paul Goldschmidt is finding his stroke early in the season, something he always seems to do against the Dodgers.
Goldschmidt hit a go-ahead homer in the eighth inning and drove in another run, and the Arizona Diamondbacks won 4-2 Tuesday, spoiling the Dodgers’ home opener in Vin Scully’s final season.
Goldschmidt gave the D-backs a 2-1 lead with his second homer of the season off Chris Hatcher (1-1). Goldschmidt homered for the second straight game and has done so in four of his last five against the Dodgers dating to last season.
“It was a nice come-from-behind win, especially against these guys,” Goldschmidt said. “Hopefully, we’ll be battling them the whole year with the rest of the division. It’s a tough division, so these guys mean a little bit extra because you’re trying to get that playoff spot.”
Ahead 3-0 in the count, Arizona manager Chip Hale gave Goldschmidt the hit sign.
“It’s one of the things I always tried to instill in my guys, to be comfortable hitting 3-0,” Hale said. “He got a pitch to hit, and you trust him. When you trust a guy, that’s when you give him the 3-0 hit sign.”
Arizona added two more runs in the ninth on Socrates Brito’s triple and Goldschmidt’s groundout to shortstop.
After Goldschmidt’s homer, Hatcher gave up a two-out double to Welington Castillo before issuing consecutive walks to Jake Lamb (intentional) and Yasmany Tomas that loaded the bases. Hatcher departed to boos.
“I deserve it. Right now I’m not making good pitches,” Hatcher said. “The roller coaster has to stop and we got to put up some zeros.”
Kenta Maeda allowed five hits over six scoreless innings, struck out four and walked one in becoming the first Japanese pitcher to start a Dodgers home opener since Hideo Nomo in 1996 and 2004. Except for the walk, his line was identical to that of his 7-0 win last week at San Diego in his major league debut.
“Maybe the only good thing we did off of him was that we kind of pitch-counted him, so his pitch count got deep,” Hale said. “They had to go to the bullpen, which is a good bullpen, but we’ve had some history against those guys. And now we have a little history against Maeda.”
Tyler Clippard (2-0) gave up one hit in one inning and striking out one. Brad Ziegler pitched the ninth to earn his first save.
Arizona tied the game 1-all on Nick Ahmed’s home run off reliever Pedro Baez with two outs in the seventh.
Arizona starter Patrick Corbin gave up one run and six hits in six innings. The left-hander struck out one and walked one.
FUN TO WATCH
Yasiel Puig entertained the sellout crowd of 53,279 on the base path and in the field.
In the fifth, Puig legged out a double and overslid the bag, putting him in a game of cat and mouse with second baseman Jean Segura. Sprawled on his stomach in the dirt, Puig initially touched the bag with his right hand while a fully stretched Segura rested his left glove in the middle of the base. Then Puig quickly stuck out his left hand and the umpire signaled safe. The D-backs challenged the call when it appeared Puig touched Segura’s glove with his left hand, but it was upheld after a review lasting 3 minutes, 51 seconds.
In the sixth, Puig played a ball barehanded off the wall in right field and his throw to third baseman Justin Turner got Castillo out.
The Dodgers brought out some of their greats before the game to honor 88-year-old broadcaster Scully, who is retiring at season’s end after 67 years. Don Newcombe, who started Scully’s first opening day in Brooklyn in 1950, began a relay of the ball that went through the hands of Maury Wills, Sandy Koufax, Al Downing, Fernando Valenzuela, Orel Hershiser, Tom Lasorda and Clayton Kershaw before Scully got it. He was escorted to home plate by Dodgers co-owner Magic Johnson and Peter O’Malley, whose father Walter brought the team west from Brooklyn. Scully then hustled from the field to his upstairs booth, but not in time to announce the game’s first batter. He was well-prepared for the D-backs’ No. 2 hitter, Socrates Brito, with Scully spinning stories about the Greek philosopher with the same name who was sentenced to death by drinking poisoned hemlock.
Arizona’s relievers brought a 4.56 ERA into the game and held the Dodgers scoreless over the final three innings — with Clippard, Daniel Hudson and Ziegler doing the job.
“I want to give these guys as much confidence right now in what they’re doing,” Hale said. “You always look at the numbers and then you trust your gut. Those three guys are interchangeable, but Zig has been our closer now for a year and a half.”
Dodgers: Placed IF-OF Scott Van Slyke on 15-day DL with low back irritation retroactive to Sunday, once again giving the team 10 players on the DL, the same number that were on it to start the season. Van Slyke is 1 for 9 with a double and two RBI in four games. … C Yasmani Grandal (right forearm tightness) and 2B Howie Kendrick (strained left calf) were reinstated from the 15-day DL.
D-backs: RHP Rubby De La Rosa (0-1, 16.20 ERA) starts Wednesday, his fifth career start against the Dodgers, his former team.
Dodgers: LHP Alex Wood (0-1, 9.00) makes his eighth career start against Arizona. He is 1-3 with a 3.96 ERA.